Last week saw the 2013 running of the Evo Championships Series in Las Vegas, which brings together the best players for a video game tournament focused on fighting games. It’s also an event to make announcements about new or updated fighting games, and Capcom used Evo 2013 to announce Ultra Street Fighter IV.Street Fighter IV was first released to arcades in 2008 before coming to PS3, Xbox 360, and PC in 2009. Then in 2010 we got Super Street Fighter IV, which introduced new online modes, 10 new characters, and gameplay tweaks. After that was Super Street Fighter IV: Arcade Edition, again adding new characters (this time 4) and solving balancing issues.Ultra Street Fighter IV looks likely to be the last update for the now 5-year-old game. It introduces another 5 new characters including Hugo, Elena, Poison, Rolen, and a secret character. In total that means the game will ship with 44 characters to choose from. There’s also 6 new stages to compete in, of those only Cosmic Elevator, Half Pipe, and Pitstop 109 have been confirmed.Of most interest to long-time players of the game will be the “completely rebalanced gameplay” that has been implemented based on the fan feedback Capcom has received. Basically, this is going to be the most well-balanced version of the game.If you’ve invested in previous versions of Street Fighter IV you may feel a little annoyed there’s yet another version to purchase. Capcom has realized this and so is offering two ways to buy the new game. You can pay $14.99 for a digital upgrade from either Super Street Fighter IV or Super Street Fighter IV: Arcade Edition, or you can pay $39.99 for the full game on disc or via download, which also includes over $40 worth of DLC.Ultra Street Fighter IV won’t be released until early 2014 and will be made available for PS3, Xbox 360, and PC. However, if you pre-order it you gain access to 5 exclusive DLC costumes. I’m also guessing different retailers will work out their own pre-order exclusives in the coming months.
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